Music & Stories in the Classroom
Students enjoy music, movies and videos, of course. By encouraging creation within this media they will experience "ownership".
With free or inexpensive audio software, and the computers already in your classroom, just about anyone can create music or record and edit voices or stories. The following web pages show some of the ways relevant tools are being used in educational settings.
Projects like these can integrate research, writing, music, drama and a good dose of fun!.
The Children's Music Web showcases material, created by and for children. It includes everything from "Pickleberry Pie" to "Rug Bugs".
PBS' 4 part series about the roots of American music contains links for a deeper explore of this subject. It contains some rare resources from the Library of Congress.
MERLOT is a curated collection of free and open online teaching, learning, and faculty development services contributed and used by an international education community.
StoryCenter creates spaces for transforming lives and communities, through the acts of listening to and sharing stories. Since 1993, they have partnered with organizations around the world on projects in Storywork, digital storytelling, and other forms of digital media production. Their public workshops support individuals in creating and sharing stories.
StoryCorps' mission is to preserve and share humanity's stories in order to build connections between people and create a better world. At the same time, they are creating an invaluable archive for future generations.
Ms. Gorski's Drama Class
no longer on-line
Ms. Gorski's Drama Class at Pacific Collegiate School, a public charter secondary school in Santa Cruz, California, had a Radio Comedy by Teens for Teens web page.
Using simple sound recording software and imaginative writing, they put together 30-60 second radio ads for fantasy products. We particularly liked The Money Maker Machine and wished it existed in real life.
Kid Snippets: "Mean School Nurse"
If movies were written by our children... "Kid Snippets" is a weekly comedy series, in which adults act out stories written and narrated by children. In this episode, they asked a couple kids to play school nurse. This is what they came up with. "Mean School Nurse" stars Randy Roberts and Richard Sharrah.
Variations of this could be a great way to get both your shy (off camera) and extroverted (on camera) students involved. Create teams and may the best video win.
- YouTube URL
Call Me Maybe - Music with bottles
This group from Copenhagen, Denmark shows what you can do with a few recycled items.
Turn your students loose and see what sort of instruments they can come up with. You may be able to source Coke bottles at your local Mexican market.
- YouTube URL
Ballad of a WiFi Hero
H. Jon Benjamin and Jesse Benjamin created this animated adaptation of the famed McSweeney's Internet Tendency piece, In Which I Fix My Girlfriend's Grandparents' WiFi and Am Hailed as a Conquering Hero, by Mike Lacher.
Use this video as a springboard for ideas for your own projects.
- YouTube URL
Other Areas To Check Out...
• Teaching Physical Science Through Children's Literature
• Publication Opportunities & Ideas
• Music Creation
• Audio/Video Primary Sources
• Teaching Writing on the Web
• Student Literature Sites (sampler)